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Ostler's Cider Vinegar can be used as superior vinegar on its own, or used for pickling, salad dressing etc.

Basic Vinegars

Herbal or spiced vinegars are delightful to 'spike' the flavour of savoury dishes. You can also store herbs for the winter in a far more aromatic state than by drying them by putting them tightly packed into a jar of Natural Cider Vinegar.

Salad Dressings

The variety you can use is a delight to the palate. The cook has the pleasure of deciding which will suit both the guests and the salad. Use a good, moderately priced corn oil with a high content of valuable unsaturated fats. Otherwise use a first pressing extra virgin olive oil. Try making a yogurt salad dressing, or a different assortment of vinaigrette dressings.


An extra fullness of flavour and delicate aroma comes from using Natural Cider Vinegar in sauces. Sauce Hollandaise, Aioli Sauce, Mayonnaise, Thousand Island, Sauce Béarnaise, Poivrade and Tartar Sauces are just a few of the delicious varieties one can experiment with.

Chutneys, Pickles and Mustards

Our favourite chutney is an Apple Chutney made from an old Devon recipe, or try the Apple & Blackberry Chutney, the traditional Green Tomato Chutney, or for a change Hot Peach Chutney.

Pickles include Piccalilli, Red Cabbage, Crab Apples and Pickled Fish.

Instead of mixing powdered mustard with water, use Natural Cider Vinegar. Mustard tastes better and keeps longer this way.

A refreshing drink

The standard way is to mix two tablespoons in a glass of cold or warm water. Take one glassful first thing in the morning, one during or after lunch and one in the evening. To reduce the sharpness mix with one teaspoon of unblended, pure honey. Many who find the vinegar either upsetting their stomach or not working well; find this mixture the perfect answer. Alternatively, it can also be mixed with a fruit cordial of your liking - just add two tablespoons of vinegar to a glass of warm water.

Tomato chutney

Makes about 2 kg/4lbs

  • 1 teaspoon pickling spice
  • 2 large onions, finely chopped
  • 300 ml/½ pint cider vinegar
  • 225 g/8 oz apples, peeled, cored and chopped
  • 1 kg/2 lbs tomatoes, green or red, sliced
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • 1 rounded teaspoon dry mustard
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 225 g/8 oz sugar
  • 225 g/8 oz sultanas

Put the pickling spice into a piece of muslin. Place this, with the onions, in a saucepan with 4 tablespoons of the vinegar and simmer gently until onions are nearly soft. Add the prepared apples, tomatoes, salt, pepper, mustard, ginger and sultanas. Simmer gently until the mixture is quite soft, stirring from time to time. Add the remaining vinegar and the sugar. When the sugar has thoroughly dissolved, boil steadily until the chutney is the consistency of jam. Remove the muslin bag, pour the hot chutney into warmed jars and cover at once with waxed paper, then with a metal lid.

Apple Chutney (An old Devon recipe)

  • 40 fl oz (1 litre) cider vinegar
  • 2 lb (1 kilo) apples (cored and peeled)
  • 1 lb (450g) raw sugar
  • 1 lb (450g) raisins (seedless)
  • 2 teaspoonful sea salt
  • 1 lb (450g) onions
  • 1 oz (25g) mustard powder
  • 1 teaspoonful cayenne

Chop all ingredients coarsely. Boil until tender, about one hour. Pour into hot jars. Seal.

Apple and Blackberry Chutney (another Devon treat)

  • 1 1/2lb (675g) apples (cored and peeled)
  • 1 ½ lb (675g) blackberries
  • 10 fl oz (275ml) cider vinegar
  • ½ lb (225g) raw sugar
  • 1 teaspoonful sea salt
  • 4 oz (100g) raisins (seedless)
  • 4 oz (100g) sultanas
  • 2 cloves crushed garlic or 3 small chopped onions
  • 1 teaspoonful ground ginger

Crush the blackberries in the pan with the vinegar. Simmer for twenty minutes and rub through a coarse sieve (or use a colander). Add the other ingredients. Cook gently until thick, this takes about forty minutes. Pour into hot jars and seal.

Hot Peach Chutney

This is best with slightly unripe peaches. If you do not want it hot, replace the chilli and ginger by a teaspoon of mustard powder and ¼ teaspoonful of pepper.

  • 2lb (1 kilo) peaches
  • 1lb (450g) raw sugar
  • 1 pint (575ml) cider vinegar
  • 8ox (225g) sultanas
  • 1ox (25g) chilli powder
  • 1 teaspoonful ginger powder

Skin the peaches. Halve them and remove the stones. Bring half the cider vinegar to the boil with the raw sugar. Lower the halved peaches into the liquid. Simmer until they are soft. Add all the remaining ingredients. Simmer until thick. Bottle. This is best matured for a few weeks to bring out the flavour. The recipe is worth trying with plums. These do not need peeling.

Dairy salad dressing

Ideal with green and mixed salads, salads with white fish, poultry, eggs or cheese.

  • 4 tablespoons milk
  • 4 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ level teaspoon caster sugar
  • ¼ level teaspoon mustard
  • ¼ level teaspoon salt
  • pepper

Beat the milk, cider vinegar and oil together until smooth and well-blended; then beat in the sugar, mustard and salt, and season to taste with pepper.

For more information on Cider Vinegar as a natural remedy, please consult NATURAL HEALING WITH CIDER VINEGAR by Margaret Hellmiss and CIDER VINEGAR by Margaret Hills.

Great Taste 2013 - Taste of the West Awards Gold 2013/2014 - 2012 Best Sauce & Accompaniment
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